Meet Terumi Pong, of An Emerald City Life. As a Tea Foreign Correspondent, she traveled to Singapore, Hong Kong and Tokyo with her family and came back to share her stories with us at Studio Tea. Follow along!
Will they remember? Why we travel with kids.
I remember the first trip we took with the kids on an airplane to Maui. They were about 9 months old and it was Mother’s Day and I couldn’t have been more excited. When we told people we were taking our two little babies to Hawaii some people laughed and told us we should just go alone because the kids would not remember it and our trip would be way more relaxed if we went without them. There may have been a few moments on that long first airplane flight that I thought maybe those people might have been right. But on that first family trip together our kids discovered the vastness of the ocean, the softness of the beach and the grittiness of sand in their mouths. They tasted sweet mango and pineapple and basked in the sunshine in nothing but their diapers. I know we weren’t relaxed on this trip, but I remember the joy. And I know that even though the kids can’t remember all the moments, I’m sure parts of that trip became parts of themselves. They have a lot of wanderlust and joie de vivre and as they get older, I have trouble keeping up with their zest for life.
Over time we’ve traveled to many places in cars, trains, boats and airplanes. Our packing and preparation has become routine. Over time the kids have helped look for the places we’re traveling to on maps. They’ve helped us find books in the library and dreamed about places to go that I’ve never imagined going to myself. They’ve pointed out art from places we’ve been in museums on trips to other places. They’ve helped us remember parts of places we’ve started to forget.
My guys are now 7 years old. We just got back from a trip to see family in Singapore, Tokyo and Hong Kong. I watched as my two young men expertly wheeled their own suitcases through the busy streets on our way to the airport and hotels.
I watched as they selected and chose their own pastries independently in a bakery and persevered at eating udon with chopsticks. I overheard them arguing with each other as they tried to convert their money from Singaporean dollars and Japanese Yen to our American currency to compare the cost of things we were buying.
It made me think of the first few trips we took with them when we were all beginning family travelers and how far we’ve come. I thought about what people said about traveling with them when they were younger, how my kids would not remember the trips we took. And looking back those people were very right.
My kids don’t remember those trips. They might not even remember the trips we’re taking now.
But I do. I remember it.
And these are the moments and memories that have brought me so much joy. These are the pictures that fill my walls and the times that fill my heart.
My only regret as I watch my guys grow exponentially older by the minute? I wish we could have done more of it. I wish we could have traveled more. I wish there was more time.